22 February, 2017

#SpecialFeature :: #GuestPost - A Writer’s Life by Merry Jones

*** Special Feature - February 2017 ***

About the Author:

Merry Jones is the author of some twenty critically acclaimed books, both fiction and nonfiction. Her work has been translated into seven languages. Her previous Elle Harrison novels have been The Trouble with Charlie and Elective Procedures. Jones lives with her husband in Philadelphia.

Contact the Author: 
Website * Facebook * Twitter 

A Writer’s Life
Merry Jones

Recently, someone asked me how writing has affected my relationships.

I was tempted to ask, “What relationships?”  

Because while I’m writing, I’m pretty much isolated.  Well, no.  I have a lot of company, but most of the people I hang out with aren’t real to anyone but me. They’re made up.  Make believe.  And, for the weeks and months that it takes to write a book, they dominate my mind, pushing aside mostly everyone else, interrupting conversations, waking me up at night.

Fortunately, the real people who are closest to me (I refer to them as The Breathers) accept that I can be quite distracted.  The kids got it early on, understanding that when mom was in her office, they could get away with almost anything.  Many times they’d interrupt while I was right in the middle of a murder or a harrowing narrow escape, and they had to wait a few moments for me to refocus.  I don’t think it ruined their lives to wait those moments; they knew they were the Most Important People in the World.  It’s just that, when I was in the office writing, I wasn’t always grounded in that World.  

And my husband?  His encouragement has been unfailing. Which is good for our relationship because, well, remember that old saying: If Mama ain’t happy, ain’t nobody happy?  Wisely, he encourages this Mama to do what makes her happy.  He reads and comments on my work, shares his thoughts, helps me work out snafus.

Beyond that, my writing has brought us closer in unexpected ways. In fact, so close that I actually became him, or he became me, when I ghostwrote a book under his name. I never anticipated, as I wrote that book, that the man would end up on a 21-day book tour, appearing on radio and television, being interviewed by newspapers all over the country as the talented and hilarious author of I LOVE HER, BUT...  My husband, the “author,” became a media sensation, accepting the credit on the surface, delivering clever quips on demand. But even as I simmered with jealousy, it wasn’t lost on me how generously, supportively and uncomplainingly he took those weeks away from his own career to promote mine.      

My friends have learned that I disappear for extended periods of time while I’m working on a book. I surface after the first draft, again after revisions. My social life, if you can call it that, is sporadic. For a few weeks between projects, I arrange engagements almost every day--sometimes two the same day. Then, when I start a new book, I return to all-consuming relationships with a new set of made-up, intangible, non-breathing, and nonetheless demanding characters.

I don’t know how it is for other authors. But overall, writing has had a profound effect on my relationships in that it’s allowed me to be better at them. Writing gives me an outlet for my unsettled dark side, so that my loved ones don’t have to deal with it. I weave my darkness into plots. I thrust it upon fictional characters.  By the end of the day, having wreaked havoc into my computer, I’ve temporarily purged my demons and can conduct relationships with the real live breathing people I love in gentleness and peace.  


Book Details:
Genre: Thriller, Suspsense
Published By: Oceanview Publishing
Publication Date: January 3rd 2017
Number of Pages: 320
ISBN: 1608091910 (ISBN13: 9781608091911)
Series: Elle Harrison Thriller #3 (Each can be read as a Stand Alone Novel)

Since her husband’s murder two years earlier, life hasn’t been easy for Elle Harrison. Now, at the start of a new school year, the second grade teacher is determined to move on. She’s selling her house and delving into new experiences―like learning trapeze.
Just before the first day of school, Elle learns that a former student, Ty Evans, has been released from juvenile detention where he served time for killing his abusive father. Within days of his release, Elle’s school principal, who’d tormented Ty as a child, is brutally murdered. So is a teacher at the school. And Ty’s former girlfriend. All the victims have links to Ty.
Ty’s younger brother, Seth, is in Elle’s class. When Seth shows up at school beaten and bruised, Elle reports the abuse, and authorities remove Seth and his older sister, Katie, from their home. Is Ty the abuser?
Ty seeks Elle out, confiding that she’s the only adult he’s ever trusted. She tries to be open-minded, even wonders if he’s been wrongly condemned. But when she’s assaulted in the night, she suspects that Ty is her attacker. Is he a serial killer? Is she his next intended victim?
Before Elle discovers the truth, she’s caught in a deadly trap that challenges her deepest convictions about guilt and innocence, childhood and family. Pushed to her limits, she’s forced to face her fears and apply new skills in a deadly fight to survive.

Purchase Links: 
Amazon * Barnes & Noble * Goodreads

1 eBook Copy of Child's Play by Merry Jones

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  1. Fantastic post. I truly enjoyed it!

  2. Thanks for featuring CHILD'S PLAY and offering a giveaway!